Friday, September 19, 2014

Staff Training

Owners are often relieved when their dog(s) pass the temperament screening test and are allowed to participate at a doggy daycare. But, the question that most owners do not ask the daycare is whether or not their staff is trained to handle a large group play structure. At Bark City, our staff is trained through "The Dog Gurus" program. Today, I would like to share with you a bit of their promotional material!

This is the staff training program that we make all of our staff study. You could say they are enrolled at Bark City University...

These are the two founders of "The Dog Gurus" and their credentials:

Robin Bennett is a Certified Professional Dog Trainer who founded one of the largest dog training companies in Virginia. Her first book, All About Dog Daycare is the number one reference on opening a dog daycare.

 Susan Briggs owned a large pet care center in Houston, TX for 12 years and was an early pioneer of dog daycare services. She began teaching other pet professionals to speak dog and understand dog play at her Academy in 2005.

 Both Susan and Robin are authors, consultants and experts on dogs! They have been “reading dogs,” teaching families how to train dogs, and working in the pet care industry helping others keep dogs safe for over 20 years. Co-authors of Off-Leash Dog Play… A Complete Guide to Safety and Fun, and an extensive staff training program called, Knowing Dogs.

Remember when choosing a doggy daycare, always ask if the staff is trained. For more information on choosing a doggy daycare, visit this past post!

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Maple Bacon Ice Cream

Yes... I actually did it. I made maple bacon ice cream... and I actually liked it. At first I was up in the air on whether or not I liked it, but I found myself coming back for one more bite. Then one more. And one more. It's not something I would have on a daily basis as my standard "go-to" dessert. But, it is something I can share with my four-legged friends and feel ok about.

I am all about making food for my animals, but I am also realistic. I have to make food for myself. Let's face it, it's better to hit two birds with one stone. When I saw this dairy-free maple bacon ice cream recipe on Apron Strings, I had to give it a try.

Two of the ingredients in this recipe are considered "super foods": Coconut and maple syrup.

  • Coconut oil has antibacterial, antifungal, antiviral and antimicrobial properties. That is a lot of "anti". Because of this, it can protect your canine against illness and help speed the healing process. You can read more about it here. (and all the other amazing health benefits.)
  •  Maple syrup is rich in Manganese, zinc and natural antioxidants. It also has a lower Glycemic Index than regular sugar which means it will be absorbed into your body at a slower rate. You're less likely to get that sugar high. But let's face it, sugar is sugar and it's not entirely good for dogs. They should only have it occasionally. Artificial sweeteners are poisonous to dogs, so skip that all together. I would suggest only giving your dog an ice cube sized portion of this ice cream every once in awhile. 
** Notes: The recipe does call for a bit of sugar. I omitted the sugar and just used the maple syrup. The ice cream tasted very sweet and I am wondering if it might be better with a bit less maple syrup? This recipe also has eggs in it. I did see an egg free recipe as well that I want to try (compare and contrast on texture and flavor).

This is the first time I have tried to make a coconut milk based ice cream. I plan on experimenting with some other flavors in the near future... probably not with bacon (I'm kind of over it...I'm sure my dog would like more bacon added... to everything.). Roasted peach? Or an Apple Cobbler flavor?